'Zoey 101' Actor Matthew Underwood Breaks Silence Following 'Quiet on Set,' Says He Was Sexually Assaulted by Agent

Underwood revealed that the incident ended his acting career.

Phillip Faraone / Getty Images for Nickelodeon

Investigation Discovery's docuseries Quiet on Set revealed the dark side of Nickelodeon's popular sitcoms for kids. Following its release, more actors from the network's hit shows are sharing their painful experiences in the industry.

In a shocking post on Instagram, Zoey 101 actor Matthew Underwood revealed his own history of experiencing abuse in response to messages he's been receiving about the docuseries. In the post, Underwood writes that he was "groomed and molested" by the stepfather of his best friend as a 12-year-old.

Underwood also shared that as a 19-year-old he was sexually harassed and assaulted by his former agent. Although Underwood reported the agent, who was subsequently fired by his agency, Underwood wrote that the man is "still active in the industry."

"This experience provoked my move away from LA and ended my pursuit of acting," he continued.

Underwood explained that he is opening up about his past because of accusatory messages he's been receiving, including death threats from people via email who considered his silence in the wake of QOS to be complacency.

"I have spent many years rebuilding my self-image and those hateful words have little effect on me today," Underwood wrote. "But, I imagine many of my friends in the business are being equally harassed if they aren't joining the chorus, so I'm sharing this with hope that some of you can recognize that just because a person doesn’t shout from the rooftops that pedophiles are bad or that people can suck – that does not mean they don’t have their own reasons for staying silent, good reasons, personal reasons.”

Underwood also shared that he personally never "had a bad experience working on the set of a Nickelodeon show" and "never had a bad experience with Dan" Schneider, the producer and writer accussed of creating a toxic environment on his Nickelodeon sets.

"I can’t believe I even have to say this, but of course I don’t fucking support pedophiles," Underwood concluded. "Please stop wishing death upon my family and please reconsider harassing other actors who wish to maintain their privacy – you never know who has already been a victim of the hell you’re wishing upon them."

In Quiet on Set, former employees of Schneider, the creator of shows like Zoey 101, Drake & Josh, and iCarly, said that he demonstrated domineering and inappropriate behavior with his team. Drake & Josh star Drake Bell revealed that he was a sexual assault victim by the show's dialogue coach, and Underwood's fellow Zoey 101 star Alexa Nikolas denies that Schneider feels any remorse for his actions.

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